Volcano mountain Rinjani of Indonesia

Indonesia Travel Guide

Practical information

Indonesian Rupiah
Time zone
GMT +7

Indonesian Culture

It is thought that people inhabited Indonesia around 1.5 million years ago thanks to the remains of 'Java man', an early human fossil discovered in the late 1800s and still considered to be the oldest human fossil ever found. There is no other evidence of human life, however, until the 7th century when the Srivijaya kingdom brought Hinduism and Buddhism, later reflected in the construction of temples such as Prambanan around the 9th century. Islam then arrived in the 13th century but it wasn't until 1512 when the first Europeans, the Portugese, settled on the islands. They established trade routes with the West for nutmeg and spices and were soon followed by the British and the Dutch. The Dutch took over the main trade routes with the Dutch East India Company (VOC) and eventually established colonial regime over the islands. The Dutch rule was an unsettled time with different wars raging, the French occupation of Holland and the battle of Waterloo meant the rule of this kingdom passed between several countries before returning back to the Dutch. They then ruled until the start of the 20th century when the beginnings of an independence movement known as Sarekat Islam began to form. This became quickly popular and the invasion and subsequent surrender of the Japanese during World War II caused the then-president to declare Indonesia's independence in on 17 August 1945. Towards the end of the 20th century, Indonesia has grown and continues to grow, as a popular tourist destination. Sitting in a tectonic hot zone, it has experienced a few large scale earthquakes, most famously Boxing Day 2004, but has rebuilt after each one to provide an incredible, diverse location to visit. 

The heavy influence of Muslim and Hinduism is still abundant on the islands, alongside a large Christian following in the east. Theatre plays a huge part in Indonesian culture, as a way to pass on stories about their ancestry, with performances depicting religious literacy and containing masked characters to represent their gods. Arts and music often reflect Hindu influences and they play a big part in Indonesian education. Schools also promote a knowledge of environmental awareness as caring for, and giving back to, the earth are also considered to be highly important in Indonesian culture. 

Time Zone

Indonesia is spread across three time zones. 

The time zone in Jakarta, Indonesia is GMT +7

The Lesser Sunda Islands use Coordinated Universal Time (UTC)/ Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) +8.

Eastern Indonesia is GMT +9

Indonesia does not use Daylight Saving Time (DST).



The official language of Indonesia is Indonesian, spoken by 94% of the population. The most popular languages include Javanese, Sudanese, Hindi, Chinese, Dutch, and English.

Useful Phrases

  • Hello, How are you? - Hai, apa kabar?
  • All Fine - Baik, Baik Saja
  • What's your name? - Siapa nama anda?
  • My name is.. - Nama Saya...
  • Good Morning! - Selamat Pagi!
  • Good Afternoon! - Selamat Siang!
  • Good Evening! - Selamat Sore!
  • Good Night! - Selamat Malam!
  • Long time no see - Lama Tidak bertemu!
  • Pleased to meet you - Senang bertemu dengan anda
  • No - Tidak
  • Yes - Ya
  • Thank you - Terima Kasih
  • How much/many - Berapa
  • Excuse me - Persmisi
  • I want... - Saya Mau...
  • I don't understand - saya tidak mengerti
  • Do you speak English? - Anda bisa bicara bahasa Inggris?
  • Do you speak Indonesian? - Anda bisa bicara bahasa Indonesia?
  • Yes, a little (in response) - Ya, sedikit
  • How do you say ... in Indonesian? - Bagaimana cara mengatakan ... dalam bahasa Indonesia?


Indonesian Rupiah

The currency in Indonesia is the Indonesian Rupiah (IDR). You can withdraw local currency from ATMs in the country or exchange cash at exchange offices in the airport and larger towns.

For the latest exchange rates please see www.xe.com

The cost of an average meal in Java is between $3 and $8. On Bali that increases to $4 to $11. When purchasing souvenirs, we ask our guests to respect the Species Protection Agreements (CITES) which protects 2,500 species of animals by prohibiting the trade of hides, scales, corals, shells and live animals.



Indonesia uses European style plugs with two round pins. Voltage is 220V / 50Hz except in a few places where it is 110 V.


Indonesia lies on the equator and as such, there is little variation in climate over the course of a year. There is no extremes of summer and winter and just two main season, wet and dry. The wet season runs from November to April and dry season May to October. The climate is tropical with dense rainforests covering the interior of nearly all the country’s main islands. Humidity is generally between 70% and 90%. Cooler climates can be found in the mountainous areas above 1500m.

On Java and Bali during the dry season you can expect temperatures between 20 and 27°C with humidity around 80% and a possibility of some rainy days.

Safety and Security

Your safety and well-being is always the number one priority at Kandoo Adventures.

We operate all our travel destinations in accordance with the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) advice, which publishes travel advisory notices for British nationals. We also closely follow the advice of ABTA (The Association of British Travel Agents) which provides support to UK tour operators.  

In addition to this, our extensive, directly-managed operations in each of our destinations, provide us with detailed knowledge and up-to-date information, which enables us to make informed decisions and operate our trips safely.

We always recommend that you regularly check the FCDO's travel advice, in order to keep up to date about the country you are planning to visit.

If you are not a UK resident, we would recommend that you visit your government's travel advisory website for further information:

Alternatively, you may wish to visit our Travel Updates page or seek further information from the World Health Organisation.

Lost or delayed luggage

We recommend that you wear your walking boots to travel and pack as many essential items as possible in your carry-on luggage for your trekking adventure in Indonesia. If your luggage is delayed we can then do our best to kit you out to start the trek on time. In the event that your luggage is delayed or lost, our procedure is as follows: 

  • Establish what items are missing and a contingency plan for each critical item
  • If it reaches 6pm on the evening before starting the trek and your luggage has not arrived we recommend buying and/or hiring items immediately as a precaution
  • We will take you to a shop where you can buy toiletry items, e.g. toothbrush. You will be able to find everything you need in Yogyakarta or Denpasar.

We will do everything we can to help if your luggage is lost or delayed. Be sure to check your insurance policy coverage for lost luggage cover.

What to wear

In general Indonesian dress is very casual, lightweight clothes and natural fibres will be easier to wash. For women, we advise you to avoid wearing revealing clothes, a long skirt or trousers with a loose cotton shirt works well with the heat. Wearing bikinis and swimwear is fine in resorts and at the beach but not when visiting villages or towns. When visiting the temples on your trip, you should make sure that your arms and head are covered – bring along a scarf for this!
Vulcano Ijen, in Java oriental


The republic of Indonesia is in south east Asia between the Indian and Pacific Oceans. The country is comprised of over 17,000 islands, the largest being Sumatra, Java, Sulawesi, Borneo, New Guinea and Java. Indonesia has a population of over 265 million people making it the 4th most populous country in the world, the majority of the population live on the island of Java, the worlds most populous island.

Indonesia lies on the Pacific ring of fire and experiences frequent earthquakes. A string of volcanoes runs through Sumatra, Java and Bali. There are around 147 volcanoes in the country of which roughly 75 are still active.

Despite its large population, Indonesia has vast swathes of wilderness and some of the highest levels of biodiversity on the planet. Many of Indonesia’s islands were once joined to mainland Asia and others were once joined to Australia. This has resulted in flora and fauna which is a mix of Asian and Australasian species. Around 70% of Indonesia is covered in forests and the country is home to a staggering 1,794 bird species. There are also numerous species of mammals including Komodo dragons, Sumatran orangutan, javan rhinoceros, Sumatran tiger and pygmy tarsier.